Jukasa News Update – Monday, October 26, 2020
The Neskantaga First Nation has been fully evacuated after officials discovered an oily sheen on the community’s reservoir.
A total of 230 residents, about half of the community’s 460 residents, were evacuated from the city last week to Thunder Bay, and the community’s water pipes turned off.
Officials escalated the evacuation and flew out the remaining residents after testing revealed high levels of hydrocarbons in the community’s water supply.
Indigenous Services say they are providing funding for all evacuation costs.
First Nations leaders in Nova Scotia say they have little faith in Ottawas efforts to stop violence by non-Indigenous agitators attacking the indigenous community over Mikmaq fishing rights.
The Mi’kmaq people hold a constitutionally protected right to earn a moderate livelihood from fishing, hunting and gathering where and when they want.
Many non-Indigenous people involved in the province’s $1-billion lobster industry, however, have argued the court’s decision also affirmed Ottawa’s right to regulate the industry to ensure conservation of the lobster stocks.
That disagreement led to violence resulting in one of the Mikmaq fisheries being burned to the ground this month.
Ottawa appointed a former local politician in the province as a special representative to mediate talks with indigenous and non indigenous fishers on Friday.
Indigenous officials say they do not believe the person selected has the capacity to be a neutral third party.
The elected council of Six Nations called for calm on Saturday after a week that saw tensions escalate between police and demonstrators at the McKenzie Meadows housing development.
Road closures were in effect in parts of Caledonia on Saturday morning due to demonstrations opposing the development.
Six Nations Elected Council issued a statement late on Friday saying the community should focus on addressing land claims with the federal and provincial governments, describing it as a goal all members share despite other differences of opinion.
The AFN says it has “lost confidence” in RCMP Commissioner Brenda Lucki after months of unrest.
Now National Chief Perry Bellegarde is calling for her resignation.
He said he would be writing Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to ask him to replace Lucki with “someone who will focus their attention on public safety and combating racism.”
The call for her resignation comes as the RCMP has faced heavy criticism for its response to violence toward a disputed Mi’kmaq moderate-livelihood lobster fishery in Nova Scotia.
Earlier this week, Lucki defended RCMP officers in Nova Scotia after Indigenous Services Minister Marc Miller said they had failed to properly protect Indigenous people there and says she will not resign.
- Previous Jukasa News Update – Thursday, October 15, 2020
- Next Jukasa News Update – Wednesday, October 28, 2020